Strange Brouhaha

Tuesday, November 30, 2004


You ever sit and stare at the keyboard for half an hour wondering what to say? Ever troll the Internet, desperately looking for something to complain about? Ever just feel too tired to complain? Or, really, to make any effort at all?

There's a new Ed McBain book coming out. The last one, called "The Frumious Bandersnatch," was...well, I don't remember what it was. I remember thinking that it was a bit too nudge-nudge wink-wink, but that it was still Ed McBain. He hasn't gone downhill nearly as much as, say, Clive Cussler (who has another Dirk Pitt book out, God help us all). McBain is always pretty reliable; some books are better than others, but you can't really say "Aw, his books from the 70s are better" because a bunch of them from the last decade or so have been very good. I can't even pick a favorite 87th Precinct book. Dunno whether that's good or bad.

I have a deadline coming up, and nothing to write for it. The Village Playhouse of Wauwatosa's short play contest entry deadline is "postmarked by the 15th." My entries last year were, I thought, pretty good--but unsuitable. Maybe I've mentioned this before, but they basically don't have a stage! It makes for a writing challenge, although it also really makes you focus on dialogue and characterization, because you can't rely on props and staging to make your play for you. (My Blitz play, I think, relied heavily on the actors being able to carry off stage business.) I've been trying to come up with ideas, but I seem to be stuck in this supernatural rut, which is really annoying.

Did I ever mention that I finally got around to listening to the remastered "A Love Supreme" that was released a few years ago? I was hoping for some kind of stunning revelation, but it really wasn't there. Still worth getting, if you're a Coltrane fan, but don't expect a "wow!" experience.

I bought a Rubik's cube a few weeks ago. I got my solution time down to 1:30-1:45, but that's not fast enough! I used to be able to solve it in under a minute, and I came across a web site with videos of a woman solving a cube in under...wait for it...under 17 seconds. (She's a former Czech champion cuber.)


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